Our Mentoring Mission
“We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give”.
The mission of the HEAR Mentoring Program is to provide guidance and bridge the experience gap in order to help HEAR Scholars persist and succeed in the college environment.
This is achieved through a structured, comprehensive and intentional support system.
Our Mentoring Program is based upon the Elements of Effective Practice for Mentoring, developed by MENTOR | The National Mentoring Partnership. The goal of the HEAR Mentoring Program is college success and college persistence. College presents a unique challenge to low-income and/or first generation students. As a Foundation we believe that we have a critical role to play in guiding our scholars through the harder times, and providing support to their education beyond monetary contributions. With this support also comes the opportunity to celebrate in their successes! Research has shown that access to an adult role model has a significant impact on college success and graduation rates, as well as the general well being of first-generation students in particular. To ease the transition to college, incoming HEAR Scholars have access to four levels of mentoring support:
- Individual mentor-scholar relationship
- Incoming class cohort
- Peer mentoring cohort
- HEAR workshops and events.
At the beginning of their engagement with HEAR, Scholars are matched with an individually selected mentor. Most HEAR Mentors are college graduates, who combine knowledge of college life with work experience and have a valuable network of contacts. Mentors provide guidance in a number of ways:
- Help HEAR Scholars adjust to a new environment, answering questions, and providing advice where needed
- Offer practical input, assisting with internship search and resumé building, and pre-emptively checking in with their mentee during key times throughout the school year;
- Represent an outside source of advice at moments when students need it most.
Where did it all start?
The HEAR Foundation began its scholarship program in 2009, awarding its’ first scholarships in the Spring of 2010. In an effort to extend both the short and long term impact of this program, the Foundation added a Mentoring Program.
Students, especially minority students, who maintain a relationship with a mentor typically have:
- Increased student retention/graduation rates;
- Higher GPA’s
- Increased academic perseverance and achievement;
- Increased likelihood that they will return to college for a second year;(Both of the above are held in comparison to those who do not receive mentoring)
- Increased professional success;
- Increased incomes and job satisfaction;
- Increased self-esteem;
- Decreased work stress;
- Advanced interpersonal communication skills;
- Increased awareness of resources available to them.